Artist Interviews

Q&A: Mark Chadwick

By | Published on Friday 3 September 2010

Mark Chadwick

Mark Chadwick formed The Levellers in 1988, after future bandmate Jeremy Cunningham tried to sell him his bass guitar in a Brighton pub. The pair hit it off and, along with a group of like-minded musicians from the local area, created a band that has since released no less than six top 40 albums (including a number one) and fifteen top 40 singles. The band has led to other ventures too: their Brighton-based HQ, Metway Studios, provides low cost recording space to other Brighton-based musicians, and in 2003 they launched their own festival, Beautiful Days, which continues to take place annually.

This month, Chadwick branches out on his own for the first time, with his debut solo album, ‘All The Pieces’, due for release on Stay By Records on 6 Sep. Featuring songs written over the last two decades and produced by Sean Lakeman, a number of guests also make contributions, including Lakemen’s brother Seth, Clearlake’s Toby May and Equation’s Kathryn Roberts. We caught up with Mark to ask the Same Six.

Q1 How did you start out making music?
Busking around Europe in an old ambulance, mostly starving to death.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
The last twenty years of my life in a band, and all the trials and tribulations therein. But the kind of things that don’t really get sung about by the band that I’m in.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
Composting ideas in the back of my mind in the hope that they grow into something bigger, so that when I come to sit down and write music, they’ve come to full fruition as a song.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
I can’t think of any artists I’ve heard that haven’t influenced me in some way, but for this particular album the folk revivalists of the late 60s and 70s from both sides of the Atlantic were particularly influential.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
Turn it up and listen, as if you really like real music.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
To entertain and to inform all those gracious enough to take the time to listen to it.